Celebrate Canada’s 150th on your family’s dinner plate

Jul 13th, 2017 | By | Category: Food and Nutrition, Home

As you celebrate our special anniversary year, don’t miss the amazing foods we have to offer. Here Lynn Crawford, one of Canada’s most iconic chefs, shares some of the food trends she’s currently seeing in our 150th year.

Canadian-international fusion: From far and wide, our multicultural mosaic means infusing Canadian favourites with international flavours. “Earlier this year, Canadian-international fusion made Loblaw’s list of 2017 food trends, and they couldn’t have been more right,” remarks Crawford. Keep spice mixes like Za’atar, Togarashi and Ras El Hanout to kick up the flavour in dips and barbecue meats. Or turn your meal routine upside down with sushi burritos made from British Columbian salmon, a steaming plate of butter chicken poutine, or a kimchi grilled cheese.

French-Canadian cuisine: With popular restaurants like Joe Beef and Le Toqué, it’s no surprise that Montreal recently topped a list of 10 rising star foodie destinations. It continues to get the attention of food blogs and food writers as the city celebrates its own 375th anniversary. Embrace our Quebecois heritage with hearty dishes like poutine, creton, baked beans, pea soup, tourtiere, ragoût de pattes de porc, and tarte au sucre. You can also try the bounty of locally produced cheese, bagels and smoked meats.

First Nations food: Discover foods with a history richer than our country’s modest 150 years by learning about First Nations household favourites that have been enjoyed here for millennia. “Some of my favourites to cook with are huckleberries, Saskatoon berries and baked apples. For meats I like pickerel, goose, quail and moose; and for grains wild rice barley and corn,” says Crawford. Dip into the First Nation’s cookbook scene and you’ll find outstanding recipes like green corn leaf bread, traditional bannock, smoked salmon and roasted partridge.

Patriotic colour palette: Desserts are an easy place to add a pop of red and white to your party. Fresh strawberries,
raspberries, cranberries and rhubarb are the perfect accompaniment to white chocolates, cakes, creams and meringues in airy summer desserts. “Try ingredients like cranberry juice and clamato for a festive touch in the drink department,” advises Crawford.

Fresh Halibut, Pistachio & Cherry Tomato Fusilli

Canada turns 150 this year and families can feel fortunate for the many healthy and delicious local foods that inspire gatherings with great friends. In fact, more than eight out of 10 Canadians want to cook with more fresh, local or regional ingredients according to a recent study. Fortunately, celebrated Canadian chefs, like Toronto’s Cory Vitiello, make it easy with delicious recipes for any kind of family gathering.

For an easy-to-share reunion winner made with wholesome ancient grains pasta, try this effortless dish Cory created for Catelli Pasta’s 150th anniversary recipe collection in honour of its shared birthday with Canada.

Prep time: 30 minutes

Cook time: 25 minutes

Serves 4-6


• 1 pkg. (340 g) Catelli Ancient Grains Fusilli

• 10 oz. Pacific halibut fillet (cut into one-inch cubes)

• 1/2 cup (125 mL) pistachios, shelled and chopped

• 2 cups (500 mL) cherry tomatoes

• 2 handfuls of washed baby arugula

• 10 slices pancetta

• 12 Brussels sprouts

• 1 clove of garlic

• 1/4 cup (60 mL) extra virgin olive oil

• 1/3 cup (83 mL) flat leaf parsley, chopped

• Salt and pepper to taste


1. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil.

2. Slice pancetta into half-inch pieces. Over medium heat, cook pancetta in large sauté pan until it begins to brown and tender. Add garlic, cherry tomatoes and olive oil and cook until tomatoes begin to blister and burst.

3. Add pasta to boiling water and cook fusilli according to package instructions.

4. Add halibut to pan; lightly season with salt and sauté over medium heat, turning pieces over for 3 to 4 minutes until lightly browned and just cooked. Fish should be flaky and fork tender.

5. Roughly chop pistachios and thinly slice Brussels sprouts, removing root ends.

6. Add pistachios, Brussels sprouts and arugula to sauté pan and stir on medium heat until greens are wilted — no more than two minutes.

7. Drain cooked pasta and add to sauté pan; gently stir in chopped parsley and a pinch of salt. Add pepper to taste. Drizzle with olive oil and garnish with extra parsley leaves.

Find more recipes at www.catelli.ca.

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